The Indian Railways on Friday ran a special train to ferry 1,200 stranded migrants from Lingampally in Telangana to Hatia in Jharkhand, a first since the lockdown began.
Another special train from Kerala carrying 1,200 migrant workers to Bhubaneswar in Odisha will
leave from the Aluva railway station on Friday evening, state Minister V S Sunil Kumar said.
The special train that earlier left from Telangana at 4.50 am Friday carried 1,200 stranded migrant workers, said RPF DG Arun Kumar said.
It's the only train to be deployed so far, he added.
The train usually seats 72 people in a compartment. However, keeping in mind the social distancing norms, it accomodated only 54 people in each compartment.
According to the railway officials, a special non-stop train operated as a one-off service on Friday morning from Telangana to Hatia in Jharkhand.
A one-off special train was run today from Lingampalli (Hyderabad) to Hatia (Jharkhand) on request of the Telangana Government & as per the directions of Union Railway Ministry. pic.twitter.com/9YptotxcbVâ ANI (@ANI) May 1, 2020
According to officials in Jharkhand, the state government has made adequate arrangements for the testing and quarantine of the migrants returning to the state from the special non-stop train.
Meanewhile, the migrant workers from Odisha accommodated in camps in Ernakulam District since the COVID-19 lockdown will be brought to the station in state-run corporation buses as per the protocol announced by the government, he said.
The railways have suspended the passenger, mail and express train services in a bid to combat the spread of COVID-19.
Last month, hundreds of migrants reached Bandra terminus railway station in Mumbai after rumour was spread that train services were resumed.
Incidentally Friday is also the international Labour Day.
In its revised guidelines for the lockdown, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has allowed the inter-state movement of stranded people, including migrant labours, workers, students, tourists and others, and also provided the procedure for the same.
(With agency Inputs)